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Left AND Right Showing Cognitive Dissonance on Ukraine and U.S. Gun Rights

Left AND Right Showing Cognitive Dissonance on Ukraine and U.S. Gun Rights

“[O]ne of the reasons the Russian army has been stalled in Ukraine is because the Ukrainian government has armed Ukrainian citizens to fight against the Russians,” documentary filmmaker, activist (and sometimes called “gadfly”) Ami Horowitz declares. He’s introducing a short  Daily Wire “man on the street interview” YouTube video where he asks New Yorkers, 20-somethings by the looks of them, if that has changed their views on the Second Amendment.

“It’s tricky,” one sheepishly grinning woman just oozing “progressive” defenseless responds. “I don’t know, I don’t even think cops ... need them.”

At least the rest of respondents prove not to be total Eloi (Google it if you don’t know) and seem to embrace the idea of Ukraine arming its citizens to defend their country against foreign invaders – up to a point.

“Love it! I think that was a great idea,” a smiling blonde agrees.


“In some ways does it make you kind of rethink your position on the Second Amendment here in the United States?” Horowitz asks.


Her smile goes away for a second.

“Not at all, not really,” she replies, and excuses herself to go to class.

Other respondents run the range from saying Ukraine is a different country to saying they hadn’t given that any thought to  saying, “it’s something to consider.” In other words, they'd never actually considered the Second Amendment before but were just kneejerk against it because of conditioning.  And even if they do reconsider, their opinions will be reactive. Don't expect too many to realize that having an armed and trained population before an invasion could be a deterrent that would discourage one from happening in the first place.

Hooray for Hollywood

“Amy Schumer is co-hosting the 94th Academy Awards with Regina Hall and Wanda Sykes, and she’s revealed at least one idea she planned for the upcoming ceremony: having Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy appear during the ceremony via satellite or a pre-taped video segment,” entertainment news giant Variety reported.





“I actually pitched, I wanted to find a way to have Zelenskyy satellite in or make a tape or something just because there are so many eyes on the Oscars,” Schumer revealed. “I am not afraid to go there, but it’s not me producing the Oscars.”

That didn’t happen. Instead, the notoriously anti-gun (for U.S. citizens) “comedienne” and co-hostesses Hall and Sykes had to satisfy their need to vent their politics (and take a slap every bit as crazy as Will Smith’s at a new Florida law preventing schools indoctrinating young children with “lessons” on sexual orientation) by chanting “Gay, gay, gay!” in their introduction to the show. To the delight of Academy attendees...

The Oscar’s loss was the Grammy’s gain as host Trevor Noah introduced Zelenskyy, who spoke to the audience via prerecorded video. It was followed by singer-songwriter John Legend joining Ukrainian musicians to perform the original song “Free.”

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That’s the same (South African import) Trevor Noah who went off script in the Daily Show to urge his audience to “make it as hard as possible for people to own a gun.” And it’s the same John Legend who exhorts “We’re tired of bigotry and hate turning lethal because of easy access to guns.”

Ditto for leftist “funnyman” Stephen Colbert, who in late February did his The Late Show monologue on “Ukraine's Civilians Take Up The Fight Against Russia | Zelenskyy's Bravery Inspires World.”

“It is a triumph of humanity, because despite all of Russia’s military prowess, the ordinary people of Ukraine will not back down or bow down, and the war in Ukraine isn’t working out the way Russia intended,” Colbert declared to universal audience cheering and applause.

It was almost as loud as the time Colbert went on an anti-gun rant asserting, “I think at this point it’s clear that America’s gun culture is melting down, but the Republicans in Congress would rather maintain their power than save lives.”

It never seems to strike any of these media elites, perhaps because they live public lives surrounded by armed security details unavailable to the “ordinary people” whose interests they supposedly champion, that they’re cheering on this man Zelenskyy, who was forced by reality to admit that ordinary people bearing arms provide the ultimate last resort chance to defend against enemies, foreign and domestic.

More Ordinary People

“Nowhere is that more evident than in Estonia, where 15,000 ordinary citizens like Kaia spend several weekends each year training in guerrilla warfare as part of the EDL (Estonian Defense League),” Time Magazine, itself a big cheerleader for U.S. “gun control” reports. “And since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, heightened fears that the Baltics could be the Kremlin’s next target have spurred thousands more to sign up.”

“Most members are unpaid, though the Ministry of Defense funds their training and supplies weapons,” the report continues.  “’I truly believe that Estonians will grab a weapon or a tool against the Russian invaders,’ says Lauri Abel, the ministry’s Under Secretary for Defense Readiness.”

 A former commander of the Tallinn EDL, Abel sees the corps’ civilian status as crucial to its success. “They’re the link between the armed forces and society. They are everywhere, working in different companies. They carry the defense spirit to society.”

“On January 8, 2016, the Deputy Chancellor of the Estonian Interior Ministry announced that the government will not insist on keeping restrictions on private gun ownership,” a Library of Congress report notes. “Gun owners viewed the imposition of limits on the number of guns in private possession as a violation of their fundamental rights.”

And now, with the threat of Russia looking at its neighbors and the likelihood that more than Ukraine is on the menu, the security only an armed citizenry can offer is once more being considered, with a proposal by the Estonian Gun Owners’ Association “to increase the ammunition limit for all sporting firearms held by Estonian citizens to 10,000 rounds.”

“Sport shooters are also a valuable resource in terms of national defense, as they own high-quality weapons, are well prepared and trained in marksmanship, and are highly disciplined in safety,” the group declared, noting “the war in Ukraine has shown that weapons in the hands of civilians ‘have been of great help in disabling individual diversionists as well as hostile groups and marauders’.” (On the flip side, in the interests of national security in preparing for a wartime footing, the Association is also advocating: “Gun licenses of the Russian citizens who live in Estonia, the gun licenses of foreigners living or having the right of residence in Estonia who hold citizenship of the Russian Federation, and its allies should be suspended immediately.”

The bottom line: Reality is bearing out for all to see that the security of a free state ultimately depends on ordinary people being armed and trained.

Along these lines, we see similar moves by some other countries as a means of dealing with developing security threats.”

Lithuania, which recognizes a right to firearms for self-defense, forbids license refusals without valid reasons and allows permitted carry, is merging its military capabilities a step closer toward the populations from where its soldiers come.

“The Lithuanian parliament ... allowed volunteer soldiers and members of the Riflemen’s Union, a civilian paramilitary organisation, to keep automatic guns at home and to use weapons or special means during patrols with police and border guards,” LRT (Lithuanian National Radio and Television) reports.

While not directly involved with the war in Ukraine, and with domestic and foreign threat problems of its own, Israel, too, is renewing the involvement of its citizens in its defense and security.

“Prime Minister Naftali Bennett urged the country to be vigilant, called for civilian volunteers and urged those with gun licenses to be armed,” The Jerusalem Post reports. “We are also currently evaluating a larger framework to involve civilian volunteers who want to help and be of assistance,” Bennett said.

“Ukraine plans to model itself after Israel ... in the aftermath of the Russian invasion when it comes to issues of national security,” Jewish News reports, quoting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy “I think all our people will be our great army,” the president said. “We will not be surprised that we will have representatives of the Armed Forces or the National Guard in all institutions, supermarkets, cinemas, there will be people with weapons.”

Meanwhile, Moldova, which some are speculating may be next in line for special Russian attention, continues to enforce “restrictive” firearms laws, where “civilians are not allowed to possess military weapons or any firearms other than hunting weapons, collector's weapons, and revolvers and/or pistols.”

Point/Counterpoint

“Ukraine’s armed population could play an increasingly decisive role, from house-to-house fighting in the cities to guerilla strikes in the countryside,” author, lawyer and Second Amendment expert Stephen P. Halbrook writes in “Ukraine War Reintroduces U.S. Politicians to the Second Amendment” for the Independent Institute. In it, Halbrook gives a good synopsis  of political developments and Russian actions leading to Ukraine abandoning restrictive gun controls and arming the populace with real “weapons of war.”

“[N]ow would be a good time for Ukrainian police to burn their gun registration records,” Halbrook notes, recalling how when Nazi Germany invaded France, “military officials posted notices that all who failed to turn in their firearms within 24 hours would be executed.”

“In Bucha, Russian occupiers worked according to pre-prepared lists,” Marko Mihkelson, Chairman of Foreign Affairs Committee of the Estonian Parliament tweeted in an eerie example of history repeating itself with registration lists. “They were looking for veterans of the ATO, law enforcement agencies, owners of hunting weapons. The order was to liquidate when found.”

Then again, this whole business of involving civilians in the defense of their country is something leading influencers are calling into question.

“The military’s understandable impulse to defend against Russian attacks could be putting civilians in the crosshairs. Virtually every neighborhood in most cities has become militarized, some more than others, making them potential targets for Russian forces trying to take out Ukrainian defenses,” The Washington Post reports.

“[T] to the extent that Ukraine brings the battlefield to the civilian neighborhoods, it increases the danger to civilians,” a Canadian academic teaching international law in London, brought in for “expert opinion,” opines.

“With Russian forces targeting cities, the Ukrainians have responded by fortifying civilian areas to defend Kyiv, deploying air defense systems, heavy weaponry, soldiers and volunteers to patrol enclaves,” the story elaborates. “Civilian casualties are mounting.”

“If we follow your logic, then we shouldn’t be defending our city,” a spokesman for Ukraine’s 112th Territorial Defense Brigade replied to objectors. “That means that volunteers in the Territorial Defense Forces or in other self-defense units have the legal authority to protect their homes, which are mostly in urban areas,” The Post paraphrased, citing an advisor to the president’s office.

So... We’re All in Agreement, Then?

“Conservative Sympathy for Russia in Ukraine War an Exercise in Cognitive Dissonance,” my prior Ukraine article in Firearms News argued, subtitled “How one of the greatest examples of why a populace should own military weapons is getting ignored by some on the right.” Simply put, some of the biggest beneficiaries of the right of the people to keep and bear arms being irrefutably vindicated in front of the eyes of the world are the ones squawking the loudest against Ukraine and for Russia.

Those of us promoting that right get that Western media and Western governments lie, probably better than most. We get that there is misinformation, disinformation and outright propaganda, which is why information needs to be evaluated, tested and corroborated rather than accepted without question.

What’s perplexing to the point of maddening is noting how many on “the right” appear to be accepting Russia’s side of things without assessing their history, their propensity, their interests. To conclude because “our side” lies must mean the Russians are telling the truth is more than a logical fallacy, it is suicidal and insane. And to help spread their propaganda to the gullible is beyond irresponsible – it’s every bit as subversive as what “the left” does – because that’s what they do too.

So we see photographic evidence of atrocities against civilians allegedly committed by Russian troops, and then we see some conservative influencers giving credence to an RT News Moscow (“Russia state-affiliated media”) interview (no propaganda alert there!) with former Marine Intelligence officer and now Russian apologist Scott Ritter. He blames Ukraine and introduces a spun out of whole cloth meme that autopsies might show the bodies were moved there. He also, tellingly, expands on The Washington Post story cited earlier and asserts Ukraine’s government countenancing civilians to defend their homeland invite body counts to exploit. Believe him and his adherents if you like, but some of us aren’t going to kneejerk swallow fantastic allegations without actual evidence, especially when they come from someone who helped the United Nations implement arms control treaties and who was later “found guilty of unlawful contact with a minor and five of six other charges after a three-day trial in Monroe County Court on charges stemming from an online sex sting.”

As this is being written, the Kremlin and the Russian Ministry of defense are denying any involvement in a missile strike killing at least 50 people at a train station in Eastern Ukraine and calling claims that it was responsible for the attack “a provocation.” The story is only a few hours old and already Russia’s U.S. apologists are out making counteraccusations that are automatically being believed, seized on, and spread. And that’s because conservative influencers pave the way for the Russian narrative to gain traction.

Including influencers who are developing devoted followers.

“I fear that Monseigneur [Carlo Maria] Vigano, otherwise insightful, has fallen into error,’ writer J.R. Nyquist observes in a dissection of the cleric’s justification of Russia’s war against Ukraine. His perplexity is understandable because Vigano has become something of a darling of the right for his frequent criticisms of Pope Francis’ more frequent (foolish or calculated) descents into leftist subversion.

“This is a shocking statement from an Archbishop,” Nyquist notes. “Vigano needs to account for Russia’s military aggression. He also needs to account for Russia’s alliance with China, and Russia’s support for North Korea, Venezuela, Cuba, Vietnam, South Africa, Angola, Congo and Daniel Ortega’s Nicaragua. The communists who rule over these countries are the foremost enemies of Monseigneur Vigano’s Church.”

“Is anyone ashamed for being so stupid?” he asks of those taking the side of the invaders. “Trust the Russians!? What kind of egregious blockhead trusts the Russians? Can we find a treaty they have not violated?”

To try and make sense of self-styled “conservatives” who do give preference to the Russian narrative, Nyquist enlisted the help of writer and activist Trevor Loudon, a New Zealander of classical liberal bent who is naturally smeared as a “far right conspiracy theorist” by an assortment of leftist outlets like the Southern Poverty Law Center and Media Matters, which basically means his analyses are clearheaded and spot on.

“Some of these pro-Putin ideas are widely accepted on the U.S. right, whereas the U.S. left is pro-Ukraine, pro-Ukraine, anti-Putin, that’s setting us up to be labeled as traitors, that’s setting it up to label every conservative as a pro-Russian traitor,” Loudon notes in a video interview embedded on Nyquist’s blog. “We’ve seen this already  with the Russian collusion ... the Democrats and the left have been working with the Russians for 60 years, are now taking the moral anti-Putin high ground and are getting ready to lay this Putin slander on us.”

“You’ve got a lot of people on the American right who believe this ‘Ukrainians are Nazis’ garbage,” Loudon continues.  “Republicans and Trump supporters have just been told for the last three years by the left that they’re Nazis, that they’re fascists, that they’re horrible rightwing extremists. This is the same line that Russia has been pulling on the Ukraine, and the victims of it here are swallowing the Russian narrative when they should be understanding, yes, Ukraine has been slandered just like we were.

Masters of the Universe

Does anyone seriously think the Davos crowd and their manipulative globalist CFR functionaries in the U.S. government are the only ones who want to rule?

“Russia’s foreign minister on Wednesday pledged to work towards a ‘multipolar, just and democratic world order’, as he embarked on a trip to China in the hope of securing Beijing’s backing in the ongoing war against Ukraine,” UK’s The Telegraph reports.

"The great object is that every man be armed,” Patrick Henry insisted. “Everyone who is able might have a gun.”

Totalitarian of all stripes know there is no egalitarian power sharing arrangement than the right of the people to keep and bear arms. That’s why they’re dead set against it.

Ukrainian citizens, forced into a battle to the end for their lives their homes, and their freedom, are setting an example for the world none of the oligarchs want us to see.

Don’t help them.


About the Author: David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. In addition to being a regular featured contributor for Firearms News he blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

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